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How To Help Kids Think Critically In The Age Of The Internet

Forbes – Helen Lee Bouygues

“For children, the internet presents enormous opportunities. My daughter, for instance has learned foreign languages, honed her math skills, and emailed with family from across the world, all online. But the internet also presents enormous risks for children from malicious news sites to deceptive advertising to salacious content. While parental controls and other software can help, the most enduring solution is for children to have the skill of thinking critically.” (more)

4 Effective Shortcuts to Learn a New Language

The Yucatan Times – Staff Writer

“If you find learning a new language a bit daunting, then no worries our guideline will surely help you. Some people think by just taking some language classes they will be able to understand and speak a new language. But it is a wrong concept because it is not enough. To get command over a foreign language requires patience, effort, and persistence. But with few changes in your learning you may be able to pay more attention and focus on achieving fluency.” (more)

What makes education innovation succeed?

The Hechinger Report – Tara García Mathewson

“What does it take to make educational innovation succeed? Schools are constantly trying new things to improve student outcomes. Sometimes they work; sometimes they don’t. Sometimes they get a strong start, but too often they peter out. Transcend, a nonprofit that advises educators in the process of transforming their schools, has been testing and refining what it takes to achieve sustainable change, and just published a list of the five conditions it believes are necessary for innovation to flourish: conviction, clarity, capacity, coalition and culture.” (more)

Arts educators cite needs for more research on academic benefits

Education Dive – Linda Jacobson

“When Nettrice Gaskins was teaching at the Boston Arts Academy, she was asked to teach an Advanced Placement computer science course. But she was at the school to run a new STEAM lab, blending the arts into science, technology, engineering and math instruction. So she pitched the idea of teaching an arts-based computer science course to The College Board, and they agreed. The unique approach led to students composing music to data and a student creating a video on the connections between jazz improvisation and quantum physics — specifically the work of John Coltrane.” (more)

What does it take to get into college? Here’s a snapshot.

The Christian Science Monitor – Stacy Teicher Khadaroo

“Actress Felicity Huffman faces sentencing Friday for cheating to boost her daughter’s SAT scores. Between the stream of Varsity Blues headlines and a pending decision in the case accusing Harvard University of discriminating against Asian American applicants, many people have been wondering how American college admissions really work. How heavily do they rely on SAT or ACT scores? How many colleges consider athletics, legacy status, diversity, and other nonacademic factors?” (more)

In learning math, there’s more than one way to the correct answer

Sparta Independent – Pamela Chergotis

“Oh, the stress of learning math! It’s all so black and white — there are right answers, and there are wrong answers. Those more comfortable in the gray area in-between often find themselves afflicted with palpitations and sweaty palms. As the French writer Stendhal observed, “Mathematics allows for no hypocrisy and no vagueness.” Getting math right is a high-stakes proposition in our increasingly STEM-obsessed world. And how to teach it has long bedeviled educators. The pendulum has swung back and forth many times between a conceptual approach that emphasizes critical thinking, to one more grounded in the memorization of formulas; from the academic needs of the college-bound student, to the needs demanded by everyday life. Local teachers incorporate some of each, all while keeping a firm eye on the human element.” (more)

Does speaking two languages make you smarter? It’s easier to learn more when you already know two

Stuff – Michael Daly

“Research suggests that learning a second language while young makes it easier to learn a third – which is good to know as the country celebrates Māori Language Week. But whether bilingualism has other benefits is the subject of considerably more debate. Some studies have suggested two languages can help our brains with skills like planning and switching attention – but opinions diverge on whether these cognitive advantages are real. Professor Stephen May of the University of Auckland is a firm believer that bilingualism provides a range of benefits.” (more)

As Students Head to College this Fall, They’re Really Headed to Career

Forbes – Carol D’Amico

“Class is back in session for American post-secondary students of all kinds—from working adult learners to those right out of high school. No matter their pathway, students are primarily motivated by career and work outcomes—they’re not just working toward a degree or credential for the sake of learning. ” (more)

6 Elementary Reading Strategies That Really Work

Edutopia – Emelina Mireno

“We know that learning how to read is essential for success in school. Students need to be able to close read, annotate, and comprehend assignments and texts across all subjects. So we looked through our archives and consulted the research to arrive at a list of strategies that could develop strong reading skills and confidence for all students—including struggling readers.” (more)

The “Left Behind” Kids Made Incredible Progress From the Late 1990s Until the Great Recession. Here Are Key Lessons for Ed Reform.

Education Next – Michael J. Petrilli

“This summer, I’ve been trying to make sense of the sizable gains made by America’s lowest-performing students and kids of color that coincided with the peak of the modern education reform movement. Today, I wrap up the series by offering some personal reflections on what we’ve learned. But first, let’s recap the facts and acknowledge the vast amount of ground yet to cover.” (more)